4 x 4 TRIPS AND ROUTES
You can drive out to Die Plaat between Stanford & Gansbaai. Cape Nature Conservation allows vehicles on parts of this conservation area and it is a lovely picnic and fishing spot.
- Mount Dyer Fynbos Gansbaai
Tel: 028 388 0384
- Glen Oakes 4x4 Trail Caledon
Tel: 028 212 2050 / 028 212 2710
Arts and Crafts
Hermanus has always attracted a large number of artistically talented people. Here you will find painters, sculptors, poets, ceramicists, jewellery designers, glass designers, quilters and photographers. There are many talented artists living and working in Hermanus, bringing the area international recognition. The local market, trading on Saturday (and Sunday during the high season), will give you the opportunity to view a few of the local artists’ work.
There are also excellent African curio type works brought in from further north but the quilts, ceramics, precious stone jewellery and most fabric paintings are all by local artists.
There are many galleries in central Hermanus and the surrounding areas. Some of these galleries are listed here. Wander and explore.
- Gallery Gregoire
Tel: 028 316 2694
- The Mission House Gallery (Onrus)
Tel: 028 316 2269
- The Atelier d’art
Tel: 028 316 3238
- Hornbill House
Tel: 028 316 2696
- Erna Dry Ceramics
Tel: 028 316 2696
- Southern Art Ceramics
Tel: 028 316 3296
- Village Gallery & Gallery 64
Tel: 028 316 4587
- Art Thirst
Tel:072 682 6590
- The Fisherman’s Gallery
Tel:028 312 2509
- The Arthaus
Tel:028 313 0030
- Philip Harper Gallery
Tel:028 312 4836
- Abalone Art Gallery
- Village Gallery
Tel:028 316 4587
- Here Be Treasure
Tel:028 313 0986
- Walker Bay Art Gallery
171 Main Road
Tel:028 312 2928
- Bellini Gallery
Tel:028 312 498
Local contemporary Art Gallery showing paintings
and sculptures, Annette Barnard, Shelley Adams,
Maeve Dewar, Charlene Langguth, Karel Beenen.
Antiques and Collectables
Traverse the alleyways and you will come across all kinds of little shops. Probably the most well known is TUTAMEN, in High Street, which specialises in investment pieces.
You will find most of the major South African banks in Hermanus but not all of them have a foreign exchange facility. FX Africa, a foreign exchange business, has its office in Shop 14, Village Square Mall opposite the Old Harbour.
Banking hours: Weekdays 09h00 till 15h30. Saturdays 09h00 till 11h00.
The beaches in Hermanus are a sun worshipper’s dream with soft powdery sands. A number of choices are offered – from cozy rock protected coves to long expanses of beach, perfect for walking and finding your own, private spot to relax.
- VOËLKLIP BEACH
Voëlklip Beach is smaller with a lovely grass slope to sit on, should you not enjoy the sand. There are also ablution blocks but there are no hiring facilities. There are many small beaches all the way along the cliff path so grab a towel BUT – please don’t forget your sun block and hat. The African sun is unforgiving and a small breeze will give you the impression that you are not burning, but by the evening you will be sorely regretting having left the sun block behind.
also known as Nanny’s Beach and Lover’s Cove, just alongside Voëlklip, is particularly popular with surfers. There are braai and picnic facilities under the milk wood trees.
is a secluded beach tucked away at the foot of the cliffs just off 6th Avenue. A well – camouflaged toilet is tucked away in the bushes behind the beach – the only facility here.
Just down the road towards Voëlklip is the Blue Flag beach at Grotto. South Africa was the first country outside Europe to win Blue Flag accreditation for some of its beaches. A section of Grotto Beach offers bathers and sun worshippers standard international facilities that include lifesavers, security guards, spotless cloakrooms and a coffee shop called Dutchies. Beach chairs and umbrellas are also available for hire.
- DIE PLAAT
From Grotto you can walk to the mouth of the lagoon. The lagoon mouth is usually closed in summer as the water levels drop (this being a winter rainfall area). At this time, very long walks along the stretch of coast known as Die Plaat (the Plateaux or Board) are possible. After winter, the lagoon will breach its berm and break through into the sea. The mouth then becomes impassable.
At the Schulphoek camping and caravan park, there is a new tidal pool with change rooms. Fresh seawater is pumped into it daily and the pool is safe for children.
On the western side of Hermanus is the Sandbaai Beach with several little coves that are particularly popular at low tide, when swimming is safe. The beach is dotted with delightful rock pools full of marine creatures. It is also popular for snorkeling. There are change rooms and showers.
- ONRUS BEACH
is the choice of body surfers and surfers. Facilities at this beach have been vastly upgraded and a restaurant provides takeaways and meals. The lagoon, which is a delight for the children, opens to the sea at this beach.
- BRÊKVIS BAY – Vermont
In Vermont lie the dunes and beach called Brêkvis Bay on the boundary of the Vermont Nature Reserve. A perfect spot for picnicking and paddling. Right next door is another pretty beach called Twistbaai.
Not strictly a beach, but the shores of the Bot River Lagoon provide innumerable little spots to picnic and swim. The lagoon is a favourite with windsurfers, fisherman and waterskiers.
- TIDAL POOLS
provide safe bathing and are particularly popular with children. The Marine Tidal Pool or Bientang se Baaigat, just below the Marine Hotel, is a great place to swim or snorkel as it teems with sea life and fairly large fish.
- Fick’s Pool on Westcliff Road is a smaller pool with a sandy bottom and is well sheltered in a cove. The Schulphoek Tidal Pool at the Schulphoek Camp Site provides a vast pool and play area for both campers and day visitors. At the Onrus River camp there is a tidal pool for both campers and the public.
- TLC Skin and Healthcare Clinic
Tel: 028 313 2169
- Footprint (for gel, acrylic nails and pedicures)
Tel: 028 313 2369
- La Femme Health & Beauty Clinic
Tel:028 313 0660
- Overberg Skin & Body Clinic
Tel: 028 312 3529
- Marine Hotel, Carchelle
Tel: 028 313 0909
Tel:028 313 1000
- Arabella Western Cape Hotel
Tel: 028 284 0000
- Hot stone massage and Reflexology
Tel: 083 353 4525
- Quantum-Scio Biofeedback Therapy
Tel: 082 678 6701
There is a mountain bike trail starting at Grotto Beach along 11th Street. No bicycles are allowed on the cliff path. Bicycles can be hired.
Phone Hermanus Cycles 028 3132052
Hermanus is a birdwatcher’s paradise. It is the fastest growing ecotourist commodity in the world and Hermanus and its surrounding areas are a twitcher’s paradise. Few other areas can offer fynbos, mountain, coastal, river and estuarine habitats in such compact terrain with such easy access.
Contact Mike Ford 028 316 4790.
Boats can be hired on the lagoon, and kayaks on the lagoon or the sea from Lagoon Charter Cruises.
Tel: 028 314 0925
There are also yachts based at the New Harbour for day hire
Tel: 072 545 7798
At Kleinrivier, a little way up the R326 which starts at Stanford, you will see the
cheese farm. The shop stocks their award winning cheeses and they do great
A permit, and a copy of the regulations, is needed if you plan to collect marine
delicacies. This is available from the local Post Office. The price is R75.
Call Scuba Africa on 083 731 8235 or 028 316 2362.
Dyer Island is a 20ha Nature Reserve, situated 12 km from Kleinbaai harbour. This is one of the seabird islands. Some of the birds breeding on the island include the vulnerable African Penguins and endangered Bank Cormorant and Roseate Tern. Other breeding species include the Cape Whitebreasted and Crowned Cormorants; Leach’s Storm Petrel; African Black Oystercatchers; Kelp and Hartlaub’s Gulls. It is also the home to a colony of the Cape Fur Seal.
Hermanus offer an enormous array of eateries to please every palate. See a list of some of the finest on offer.
Fernkloof Nature Reserve was established in 1957 and forms the splendid mountain backdrop to Hermanus. Over 1100 different plant species have been collected and identified within the reserve which is only 15 square kilometres. This compares well with the UK’s 1500 species! At the traffic circle in Voëlklip, turn up the road towards the mountain.
There are numerous festivals happening through out the year, and these events always attract hordes of people. So if you don’t like crowds, stay away but if you enjoy a bit of festivity take note of the events listed below. The dates vary from year to year and can be obtained from the Tourism Bureau on 028 312 2629
- Sandbaai Kalfiefees (baby whale festival)
- Hermanus Whale Festival
- Hemel-en-Aarde Wine Festival
- Mountain Run
- Sandbaai Fish Bash
- Hermanus Mountain Bike race
- The Wildflower Festival (Our favourite!)
There are many fishing spots in and around Hermanus and they accommodate all kinds of fishing; from river fishing in the lagoon, to fly fishing in the numerous stocked dams in the area. You can also go salt water fishing on a hired boat, or off the pier in the New Harbour or straight off the rocks. There are people who will organise day trips for keen anglers. Permits can be obtained from the post office at R55. Please make sure you have a copy of the regulations before you begin!
Fly fishing is becoming increasingly popular. The contact for flyfishing is Louis
Day on 082 555 8317.
HIKING AND WALKING TRAILS
Hermanus has some of the nicest walks ever, but remember always be sure to take water, sun block and a warm jacket. Even if the weather seems warm it can change at any time. It is always advisable to walk with a friend rather than walking alone, and leave your valuables at home.
We have 15 kms of spectacular cliff paths with wonderful viewing benches for the not so energetic and over 50KM of mountain trails for the more energetic amongst you. The cliff path begins just above the Grotto Beach parking area and goes all the way to the New Harbour with a small break between Mollergren Park and Protea Road, where you will have to walk along the road for 800 meters. The paths are well surfaced and parts of it are wheelchair and pram friendly.
No bicycles are allowed on the cliff path.
The mountain trails are best accessed from the info kiosk at the Fernkloof Nature Reserve, turn at the traffic circle at Voëlklip (turn left if you are coming from Hermanus town side; right if you are coming from the direction of Stanford).
Personalised tours can be arranged. For more information contact Percy fromPercy Tours 072 062 8500.
- Cape Nature Conservation
off 7th Street (the main road through Voëlklip) up 17th Avenue
Tel: 082 729 7776
- Arabella, Equestrian Horse Centre
Kleinmond, Ysterklip Farm
Contact Matt or Sarah
Tel: 083 362 1046
- Horse Trail Safaries
Tel: 082 729 7776
- African Horse Company (Stanford)
Tel: 082 667 9232
- Walker Bay Adventures
Tel: 082 739 0159
- Fernkloof Farmer’s Market – Cricket Club Grounds (07h00 – 11h30)
Famous market for veggies, cheeses, breads, jams, etc. Great fun to have breakfast there, and if you are in luck, a Marimba band will be playing.
- Market Square – Central Hermanus (09h00 – 14h00)
Crafts, gemstones, clothing, African art. Some stalls remain open all week. Hermanuspietersfontein Boeremark (farmer’s market)
- Hemel-en-Aarde Village (08h00 – 14h00)
Cheeses, olives, wine, oils, organic vegetables, etc.
- De Wet’s House Photo Museum.
Once the School House, situated near the Dutch Reformed Church, it was dismantled and moved, brick by brick to Lemm’ Corner (the Market Place) in 1986. 028 313 0418
- The Whale Museum
is situated behind the Market Place. This museum displays a skeleton of a southern right whale. Lots of whale information, touch screens and other artefacts.
- The Whale Show.
This unique audiovisual presentation is shown daily at the museum which will make this experience even more memorable. Nigel Ashton, using his paintings and scientific illustrations, will take you below the surface and bring you facetoface with these magnificent ocean travellers, telling the story of their fascinating underwater lives, with a special focus on the visiting souther right whales and whale identification. Shows are at 10h00, 12h00 and 15h00.
- At the old harbour:
Old Harbour Museum. Efforts are being made to restore the remnants of the original old fishing boats which were used by local fishermen between 1955 and 1961.
The museum contains several exhibits depicting the history of the fishing and whaling industry in the area.
Scenic Route (Clarence Drive R44) direction Cape Town
The Clarence Drive scenic route starts in Kleinmond and takes you through Betty’s Bay, Pringle Bay, and Gordon’s Bay to Rooiels. There are magnificent views across False Bay to Table Mountain and the rest of the Cape Peninsula. Driving along Clarence Drive leads to the appearance of Kogel Bay, with long lines of surf breaking on the shining white sand and famous among surfers.
Southern Right Charters offers sea cruises and is based in the Hermanus New Harbour at the infamous Whale Shack. They offer a 10h00 Bay Cruise where they usually encounter seals, penguins, marine birds and often the beautiful dolphins and Brydes whales.
For bookings and enquiries: Tel: 082 353 0550
Walker Bay Adventures
Tel: 028 314 0925 or 082 739 0159
SHARK CAGE DIVING
- Shark Lady Adventures – Gansbaai
Experience this magnificent predator in its natural environment with the SHARK LADY, the only commercial handson woman in the industry.
Shark Lady Adventures is led by Kim Maclean. Kim holds all the relevant qualifications and is well trained in working with Great White sharks.
Bookings are essential. They take only exclusive groups for your comfort and more cage diving.
Visit them at 61 Marine Drive, Hermanus or call
Tel: 028 312 3287 or 083 746 8985or 083 725 3186
- Great White Shark Tours – Gansbaai
Join Brian McFarlane's team for a trip!! Very educational, and LOTS of fun! Contact Brian McFarlane (Bookings are essential)
Tel: 083 300 2138
Our day normally starts off with a light continental breakfast, after which we take payment, do a short briefing, and then head out to sea! Lunch, drinks and snacks are served on the boat, and after everyone has had a chance to get into the cage, we return back to land for some coffee, tea, hot chocolate and biscuits.
We can also offer a return transfer from designated pickup
points in Hermanus.
We provide all the necessary gear, wetsuits, towels, etc.
You do not need any diving experience or qualifications!
- The Village Square
The Village Square is across the road from the Craft Market and has a wide selection of shops. You will find quite a number of restaurants, pubs and coffee shops around here.
- The Craft Market
The Craft Market offers more curiotype shopping but does have local artists and other interesting stores trading over the weekend. Main Road has various clothing and shoe shops.
- Harbour Road
In Harbour Road you will find bookshops, galleries, and The Factory Shop. Take a walk through Warrington Place.
- The Courtyard
Wander through the The Courtyard which hosts many speciality shops:
- PAUL'S SPORTS & COBBERTIQUE
- Pure South
On Main Road stocks exclusively South African goods.
Pure South is passionate about South African ceramic artists, potters and fine
craft. It carries a range of Musterseed and Moonshine, Diana Carmichale,
Mielie, Monkey Biz with design pieces by Hennie Meyer, Tania Babb, Andile
Dyalvane, Light from Africa and many more.
- Hermanus Health & Fitness
1st Floor, Eastcliff Village Center
Main Road, Hermanus
Tel: 028 312 1246
There is a well maintained bowling green in the centre of town.
Tel: 028 312 4073
- Arabella Golfing Estate
Golf Club (Bookings are to be made in advance)
028 284 0105
Restaurants and Spa
028 284 0000
- Hermanus Golf Course
The Hermanus Golf Course is located on Main Road. Travel through the towncentre and you will find the entrance to the Hermanus golf course on the left hand side.
Hire Facilities: Clubs, trolleys, drive carts, caddies
Practice Facilities: Driving range, putting and chipping greens
The Club has a shop, a bar and restaurant/halfwaystop.
For bookings please call the Hermanus Golf Club on
Tel: 028 312 1954
Tours and Transfers
- Percy’s Transfer Services
1. Cape Town 072 062 8500
2. Arabella Golf Club
3. Gansbaai / Kleinbaai
4. Botrivier or Stanford Horse Riding / Micro lighting
5. Restaurant transfers The
Rock, La Vierge, B’s Steakhouse etc
6. Hermanus Golf Club
Tel: 028 316 4871
Township Tours & Siyakula Restaurant & Shebeen
Township Tours (including a meal at Siyakhula Restaurant can be arranged through the Hermanus Tourism Office.
Tel: 028 312 2629
WHALE WATCHING (Boat Based)
Only licensed operators are allowed to take visitors on boatbased whale watching trips. They are allowed within 50 metres of the mammals and have to adhere to strict rules and participate in research on the whales.
From June to the end of November there is a whale sanctuary in Walker Bay. Unlicensed boats are not permitted in the sanctuary and, outside of the sanctuary, nobody is allowed within 300 metres of the whales. The whales don’t know about this law and are often well within 300 meters of the cliff paths.
- Dyer Island Cruises Gansbaai
Cruises: ±2½ hours
Tel: 028 384 0406 or 082 801 8014
- Hermanus Whale Cruises
Experience the unforgettable interaction with whales. Departure from Hermanus New Harbour. Bookings are essential.
Tel: 028 313 2722 or 082 369 8931
- Ivanhoe Sea Safaris Gansbaai
For the most amazing whale watching experience
Tel: 028 384 0556
- Southern Right Charters
- Sea Cruises
They offer sea cruises and are based at the Hermanus New Harbour at the infamous Whale Shack. They offer a Bay Cruise where they usually encounter seals, penguins, marine birds and often the beautiful dolphins and Brydes whales.
- Sunset Cruises
The 18h00 sunset cruise is the perfect way in which to unwind after a stressful day or you can set the mood for your evening out.
For bookings and enquiries
Tel: 082 353 0550
Hemel-en-Aarde Valley Tucked into the folds of the Glen Vauloch Mountains on the outskirts of Hermanus, lies the picturesque Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. It is here that wine
lovers can treat themselves to a unique wine tour among some of the southernmost
vineyards in Africa, with only the Cape Agulhas vineyards being further
Hemel-en-Aarde Village (At intersection of the R43 and the R320)
The Hemel-en-Aarde Village is situated at the Main Road and Sandbaai intersection. Restaurants in the Hemel-en-Aarde Village complex, our very own The Class Room, B's Steakhouse and EAT, will supply sumptuous meals.
You can also explore the myriad of shops in the Hemel-en-Aarde Village. Hornbill House, Southern Art Ceramics, Ralph Walton Jewellery Design, Walkerbay Nursery and Sylvia Smith's Gallery.
Whalehaven is situated only 150 metres from the intersection on the Caledon road.
Hermanuspietersfontein Cellars are located very close to Whalehaven. Do pop in to their tasteroom. Experience 16 of the best of South Africa’s Sauvignon Blancs. Avail yourself of the opportunity to taste and compare see for yourself the differences between regions and wine making styles. They are open to cellar tours.